McCoy: Reds blitzed by Orioles, who cap series sweep with 11-1 shellacking

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

If the Cincinnati Reds own any semblance of a stopper, it is Nick Lodolo, 3-0 and the Reds were 4-0 for his starts this season.

But not even Lodolo could stop the Baltimore Orioles Sunday afternoon in Great American Ball Park.

Unfortunately for Lodolo, he was pitching for Team Slump and the Reds absorbed an 11-1 shellacking.

The Reds have scored two runs in their last 31 innings, leading to a three-game Orioles sweep and Cincinnati’s fifth straight loss and eighth in 10 games.

Entering the ninth inning, the Reds were scoreless on one hit. Two walks and a pair of bloop singles by Elly De La Cruz and Spencer Steer scored a run, a run that prevented the Reds from getting shut out in four of their last seven home games.

But the silent bats speak loudly for the reeling Reds.

“It’s not fun going through this,” said manager David Bell on his post-game scrum with Bally Sports Ohio and the media. “You don’t like seeing guys struggle at all. You know, it’s a very short stretch and you never want that.

“At the same time, you just know, I know, it’s going to turn around because of who they are,” he added.

So the Reds scored two runs in the three-game series and the run in the ninth kept them from becoming the first Reds team to score only one run in a three-game series since 1932. That team scored one run in a three-game series against the Dodgers — not the Los Angeles Dodgers -- the Brooklyn Dodgers.

When Lodolo gave up three runs in the first inning, the game was history because a three-run deficit for the Reds these days is like climbing Mount Kilimanjaro.

Lodolo retired the first two Orioles to start the game, then was hit with a double by Ryan Mountcastle, a run-scoring single by Anthony Santander on a 0-2 pitch and a two-run home run by Jordan Westburg. It was 3-0 before the Reds took their first feeble swings.

“I just didn’t execute that (0-and-2) pitch to the number four hitter (Santander),” said Lodolo. “That definitely sparked their rally.”

On the first-pitch home run by Westburg, Lodolo said, “He jumped on it, a first-pitch get-ahead fastball. I don’t think it was a bad pitch, he just put a good swing on it.”

Of his team’s offensive total absence, Lodolo said, “It’s not fun, you know. But it’s a team and we have to hang in there. Believe me, it’s going to come around. But I didn’t put us in a good spot out of the gate. That put more pressure on the offense.”

Lodolo also retired the first two Orioles in the fifth, then hit No. 9 hitter Ramon Urias with a pitch, walked Gunnar Henderson and gave up a run-scoring double to Adley Rutschman to make it 4-0.

The Orioles scored two in the seventh against Brent Suter that included a home run by Ryan McKenna.

The coup de grace was applied in the ninth, a five-run Orioles runfest. Closer Alex Diaz, in the game to get work, gave up a run and filled the bases.

Emilio Pagan replaced Diaz and gave up a grand slam to Santander, the third homer of the game from the O’s, who lead the majors with 54 of them.

Baltimore hit six in the series while the Reds never reached the warning track.

Baltimore starter Dean Kremer retired the first 13 Reds before Christian Encarnacion-Strand singled with one out in the fifth.

And that was it against Kremer. In six innings he gave up no runs, one hit, walked one and struck out six.

In Kremer’s previous two starts, he held the New York Yankees to two runs and four hits over seven innings and the Los Angeles Angels to two runs and three hits over 5 1/3 innings. He won both games.

Before he left, he struck out the side in the sixth — Luke Maile, Will Benson and De La Cruz.

Santander finished the day with three hits and five RBI, Rutschman had two hits and two RBI and Westburg drove in two.

Mexican-born Urias celebrated Cinco de Mayo with two RBI and three runs scored.

The Reds stayed close in the first two games, losing 3-0 and 2-1, but Sunday was a no-chancer from the start.

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